Calling all boffins! Welcome to the web-based service that invites volunteers to contribute to scientific projects in a huge boost for citizen science.

Created in Cape Town in 2011, Crowdcrafting is a free and open citizen science platform through which ordinary people can assist scientific projects that have been set up by individuals, institutions and professionals.

The Crowdcrafting crew says: “Science affects all of us. Science needs all of us. The way we produce goods and provide services as a society is changing. We are not just consumers anymore – we create videos, music, art, software, hardware and much more, because the digital era has empowered us to do so. It’s easier than ever before to be a producer. So why don’t we apply this model to how we do science too?”

Scores of scientific problems still require human intelligence – to analyse data and complete tasks. Scores of enthusiasts wish they had a way to contribute to scientific endeavour. Now they can.

With Crowdcrafting – which was launched in collaboration with CERN, the UN and the University of Geneva – anyone can create a new project or contribute to an existing one. Each project listed on the site starts with a simple tutorial explaining how it works and providing all the information needed to participate in it. No specific knowledge or experience is required.

Projects are varied and gripping and divided into categories including Social, Art, Humanities, Biology, Science and Economics. One leader of a current project says: “I’m looking into figuring out how the gender gap in technology might be reflected in technology magazines.” Another says: “I’m examining the use of crime, sex, violence and alcohol in pulp comics from the Golden Age of Comics (1940-1960).” A third says: “This projects identifies illegal and potentially harmful parking in pictures of major European cities.”

Investigate today and see how you can help. It is not too late to become the scientist you’ve always dreamed of being.

July 2018